Saturday, 19 August 2017

Border blocks for the new quilt

The yellow, blue and white quilt is getting some borders.

These blocks will be 4" finished.

Socks of the week with half fisherman's rib in two colours. The rib is thick and warm and nice. Socks for a fashionable young girl who goes out with bare ankles even in cold weather.

Knitted in Schachenmayr's Regia 4-ply wool, perfect for socks you want to wear with regular shoes.

Our tiny strawberries. I get a handful every day, from the end of July to mid September.

Saturday, 12 August 2017

Yellow and blue strings

Tiny scraps sorted according to colour. I used these to make 1" wide strings. No wonder my fabric stash is getting smaller so slowly!

Now I have as many blocks as I need, and the quilt centre is ready. A couple of borders will be needed to make this a nice size for a child's bed, or for a wall hanging.

My socks of the week are very traditional, in the warm and heavy yarn men seem to prefer, in the perfect pattern my mother always used for the best fit.

I hope you had a good week and will be enjoying a nice weekend.

Sunday, 6 August 2017

Not a week without new socks?

Using up an odd rest of grey yarn I knitted this pair of socks. I called them Snowball.

My box of flowers is this year purple, pink and blue. I just replaces some pale pansies with some asters in purple, pink and white.

Saturday, 29 July 2017

Antique Fair and end of knitting tour

Last weekend was the annual Antique Fair in our village. Well, they have started calling it antique, vintage and retro, as much of the stuff was far from being antique.

The birch bark shoes on the table look brand new but the technique is old and the shoes are probably only used for interior decoration.

Some fishing gear from the 60's, glass fibre rods and modern reels.

Glass from the 50's to 70's is a popular theme among collectors. It looks like people are looking for things they used to have in their childhood home.

Old copper pots and pans, washboards for mother and daughter.

By the end of the Tour de France cycling race I finished the lace socks in this upside down picture,

and a pair in the bubble pattern in yellow and green.

A baby thrush was "hiding" on the lawn and only moved after I had taken this picture. The future berry thief looked quite endearing!

Saturday, 22 July 2017

My trick for knitting error problems

Recently I have widened my knitting repertoire to some simple lace patterns. Knitting and watching TV is OK as long as the pattern is easy, the hands can almost work on autopilot. The problems start when you ought to add and lose stitches, and sometimes a stitch is lost a couple of rows back before you notice the mistake. Earlier I used to lose my nerve too and unravel everything and take an easier pattern. Then I found that I could unravel the knitting past the mistake and to a recognizable row of the pattern. I hated having to do that too. Having two socks on the same long circular needle added to my disappointment.

A while back I had the idea of dropping some stitches around the wrong stitch all the way to the mistake and usually I could find a plain knit row below it. I picked those stitches on a double pointed needle, like here. I have gone three rows down as you can see from the three loops of yarn.

Then I just knitted the missing rows, not in the round but back and forth, purling the plain rows on the wrong side and knitting the pattern on the right side, using the loops of yarn I unpicked.

And here it is, all stitches in their right places, and it only took a moment to correct it. I don't know if this is a well known way of doing it, but I have not seen it anywhere but invented it myself in the spring.

I have started a new quilt with my very own pattern, and learning from my mistakes. Yellow string strips

combined with blue ones, between scissor cut lines.

I wonder what becomes of all this!

Saturday, 15 July 2017

Knitting Tour 2017

Like every year in July, I need a knitting project for the many hours I am going to spend with Mr K. watching the Tour de France cycling race. This is the first pair of socks I finished - yes, I know, you have seen three similar pairs already but again the heel is different and this time the leg part is longer than usual.

Next I wanted a pair for little feet, for some 3 or 4 years old person who might love roses and red.

The next pair is again a pattern I used last year already, but I like the bubbles and I like these colours together.

The next pair is on the needles. Today's ride is not a bad one, moderate hills only.

I'll leave you with another picture of our Flammentanz rose, without socks this time. Have a nice weekend!

Saturday, 8 July 2017

Log Cabin quilt top and a Lover's Knot scarf

Yesterday I finished the Log Cabin quilt top. It is 6 x 8 blocks and large enough to be used as a day cover for a single bed.

Because my quilt will not be a square but a rectangle, I decided to use this setting.

Florals, stripes and plaids, nighties, aprons, summer frocks and shirts happily mixed together.

The Solomon's Knot or Lover's Knot stitch is one I have been thinking of for a long time. It looked too difficult, but I decided to give it a try anyway. My 25 g ball of Rowan's Kidsilk Haze just called for a pattern like this.

As usual, my first crochet rows had more tension than the rest of the scarf, but you really can't notice it easily. And yes, the pattern was super easy, and only a couple of times I had to unravel to the previous row because I had skipped one stitch or made one too many.

My pink peonies are just starting to bloom, much smaller flowers this year and about a week later. Our June was exceptionally cool and we had lots of rain.

Saturday, 1 July 2017

Summer trip, old books, Moomins and other nice things

The first weekend after Midsummer is traditionally the time for old literature and second hand books in Sastamala. We have been there more than ten times in a row, and many times I have shown you some of our loot. This year I found two new old crime novels by a Swedish author, Maria Lang.

And Mr K. too found something missing from his collection of old fishing catalogs and some fly patterns and a book about trips in the North.

After a satisfactory tour among the book tables and shelves we took a scenic route to Tampere. There we visited the brand new, world's only Moomin Museum. The exhibition is large, with lots of Tove Jansson's original illustrations for the Moomin novels, and scenes from the books built by Tove's life partner Tuulikki Pietilä, Tove and their friend Pentti Eistola. I grew up with the Moomin novels, and enjoyed reading them as a grownup. Last year I was lucky to renew the reading experience together with Melanie, and this year I read the biography of their author, Tove Jansson, written by Boel Westin. This again led me to buying the only adult book by her I didn't own, the Summer Book, and now I'm reading it, again with Melanie.

Today I have been building my log cabins again. Finding different fabrics for each round is a bit like Sudoku.

Last Autumn I planted some new bulbs in the garden, Allium Hollandicum, or Purple Sensation. They look pretty handsome!

My flower box colouring is this year pink, blue and purple.

Mr K: and I had a little garden helper on Thursday. He has his own little watering can just like his grandfather's.

Saturday, 24 June 2017

The ugliest corner and its flowers

Those of you who have followed my blog for some years already may remember the many unusual flower arrangements in this corner of Järvenpää, sometimes called the ugliest in town? The first year the flowers were planted in rubber boots, then in handbags and shopping bags, then they used bicycles, last year it was chairs and now old Finnish rag rugs:

This time there are normal planting boxes hiding inside the rugs.

Again, the big flower shop Järvenpään Kukkatalo has donated one flower plant for each special bouquet bought at their shop during the year, and volunteers planted the flowers and take turns in watering them during the summer.

In August, before the flowers start wilting, they are donated to anyone who wants one or some, and the rugs are cleared away.

Some boxes were without rugs

and some rugs were cut in small pieces and were just hanging there, without flowers. I think these were the good parts saved around holes in old rugs. These rugs are typical for Finland and at least Sweden too: used garments were reused not in quilts but cut or torn to strips and woven into rag rugs.

Saturday, 17 June 2017

Green things

Our rhododendrons are blooming, even the little one in the back row. We bought it just a few weeks ago to replace the Physocarpus that was growing too big for the space.

The Alchemilla, Lady's mantle, always keeps the raindrops on its leaves longer than any other plant.

Two new pairs of socks finished, a father and son set.

Then I needed to do some unusual sewing again. This chest of drawers originally belonged to my mother's grandmother, and my mother wanted it to go to her own granddaughter, my daughter Kaija. As this is a very large piece of furniture, she has nowhere to put it at the moment, so I'm keeping it in storage for her. To keep it safe, it needs some protection,

and so I sewed a green hood for it with batting on top and some corrugated cardboard in the front as a shield against hits.

This biggish willow has grown around a street lamp at the corner where our driveway begins, and the men who changed street lamps a couple of years ago could not get to this lamp at all. We told them it was not our tree but the town's, and we would be pleased to see the tree gone.

Finally, after only two or three years, they came with professionals and machines.

The tree trunk is being moved away under the electric lines.

Only a stump is left, they cleared all the branches away. Hurrah, so much less raking of leaves in the autumn for Mr K. from now on, and maybe less moss in the lawn when the sun can reach the grass better.

Silver and green in the flower box.